Protect and Serve.




It’s like she knows me, that Kate.

It’s our favorite Five Minute Friday!!!!!! And today’s theme has been heavy on my mind lately.



So… we are going to see family this weekend. My dad’s birthday is July 3- which just means we start blowing stuff up a day early. Because nothing says “Happy Birthday!” like a bunch of pyro technics and one nervous mother.

I just don’t like the 4th of July, y’all. I just don’t.

I mean, I like it in theory. In the patriotic sense. I am so really grateful that the British don’t own us anymore because our idea of monarchy would involve some reality television stars, I bet, and that’s just classless.

But. The blowing up of the things? WHAT IS UP WITH THAT.

The tradition continues: My children run around, all hyped up on popsicles and fire, and blow up seventeen million firecrackers, while I sit somewhere, in the background, all sweaty and agitated. If I could get my own thundershirt, I would. (It’s a thing. For dogs. Who freak out about fireworks and thunderstorms. And yes, that makes me the dog. I’m the dog.)

Last year I watched my husband basically set both my children on fire about four times because he too loves fireworks. This is an admission that you can file under the umpteen posts about his maturity level. And yes, he knows how I feel about this. And yes, when I TELL him, “You are such a CHILD, Brian,” he gets kind of a gleeful look on his face. Like he’s tallied up another Immaturity Token. He wins a day of lazer tag at Jumpin Joes eventually, when he gets 100 tokens. At least in his mind.


This post has no underlying deep message. Not one. There is nothing about how we have so much weight on us, us mothers, us parents, to protect and serve. To keep our little, grimy charges fed and watered, oh and also, BASICALLY ALIVE. It keeps me a bit nervous and quivery, that thought. Like parenting should come with its own Thundershirt. They should hand ’em out at the hospital.

“Congratulations,” says the Hospital. “Here’s your scunchie-faced newborn. And a Thundershirt. Because you’re so gonna need it. Especially after you see our bill. Ha ha!”

Nope. I’m not going there. Sometimes just thinking about all this protection stuff makes me kind of light headed and I wonder how I got the responsibility for two little ones when at times I can’t even figure out how to program our air conditioner correctly. (This is a constant argument at our house. Daily. It is hard, people. It’s a really new fangled air conditioner thermostat thingie, and there are a lot of buttons , and I just would rather it be something out of the Frozen movie upstairs instead of trying to deal with all the pushing.)

Yep. I got nothing about how I can’t protect my sweet boys, but I must. I got nothing about how this world seems to have done lost its mind and I have two boys that still think, maybe, just maybe the tooth fairy is still real.

I got nothing.

But I got Jesus.

And a big huge bucket of water that I set next to my camping chair.

And, this fabulous new-ish tradition (started over three years ago)  — NO big to-go cup full of vodka. So there’s that. (Did you know? The fourth of July? Some of us folks in recovery remember it to be, perhaps, one of those oh-so happy excuses for Let’s Drink All DaYYYYYYYY! because other folks were. And  I have to admit – a nice cold one helped make all the booming and basic armageddon happening all around me a little bit … softer around the edges. Sigh. Now, I just drink a bucket load of Tazo Calm tea and grab a hose and hope for the best.)

Now – remember, moms. Keep a bucket of water handy. Pray a lot. Keep an eye out for children running about, all hopped up on the power of fire and a late night and holy HECK DON’T YOU DARE POINT THAT AT YOUR BROTHER! DO YOU WANT TO PUT HIS EYE OUT? WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU? I WILL CANCEL THE 4TH OF JULY RIGHT HERE IF YOU DO THAT AGAIN, YOU HEAR ME?

Ahem. Sorry. Was just kinda getting too in the moment there.

Happy Fourth. Stay safe. Be vigilant. Protect. It’s what we do. Even if we do a rather lousy job of it and it entails a lot of pointing and shouting and possibly spraying down with a hose.

And, maybe remember:

1. Thank your troops and our service men and women- all those who serve and protect, and have served – for keeping us free.

2. Thank God that he’s truly in charge of all this nutball. And we’re not.

3. There is, always, eventually bedtime. Thank you, Jesus. For bedtime. Oh the quiet of Bedtime. Blessed be.





One comment

  1. hi dana, i’m your next door neighbor at FMF:) i’m laughing hard at what i’ve read here. hilarious:) love your header photo! you must be about the age of my oldest daughter. she married later in life too and had her kids at about the same age as you as well. hers are now 3 and 6:) have a wonderful weekend blowing things up:)

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